CINÉMA QUÉBÉCOIS 2016 Review: “Snowtime!” (2016) ★★★★★


War never brings any satisfaction. It always takes away everything that’s close to your heart, and gives nothing in return except the pain of great loss. That, we grown up people understand; but what about children, who we all must educate the same to prevent anything that may happen to them in the future? “La Guerre des tuques” based on the movie “The Dog Who Stopped the War”, the first film in the anthology TALES FOR ALL brings an educational subject matter that certainly will give your children food for thought.

It’s Christmas holidays. Children in a small village split themselves into two groups of rivals to play snowball fight; one defending a snow castle, the other attacking it. The attackers are led by a boy named as “General Luc” whose bossy attitude will grow throughout the film. The rivalry opens up more tension between the groups, that in the end makes everyone forget that this should have been just a game…

Luc tries to show everyone his leadership skills. Marc, who is on the defenders’ side owns an extremely intelligent dog named Cleo who seems the only one who can predict the outcome of this innocent game. But more importantly, Marc has an advantage on his side, his best friend Marc, who truly has a genius mind. The two weeks that the boys and the girls have to rest from the school, they decide to turn this into a snowball fight game that in the end turns into a war that seems like no one can stop.

This is truly imaginative to see how Francois designs a massive, elaborate snow fortress for Marc’s group to construct it. In the beginning, this game appears charming and entertaining for kids, until the moment when they feel the real taste of war. They start using a term that usually only grown up people use, however, it’s an iconic line which makes this animated film worthwhile over and over again where it states that war is not a reason to hurt each other. And the dog, Cleo who will make you cry.

In conclusion, La Guerre des tuques not only exceeds your expectation, but goes far beyond it; bringing fear, a strange anticipation of outcome of it, joy, happiness and many tears. That again, happens because of its subject matter, and the beautiful song “Hymn” performed by Celine Dion. By the time when film ends, you will certainly see how important it is for anything that looks like a war to never begin. But that, of course, can only happen if all the leaders of the world decide to see Jean-François Pouliot and François Brisson’s outstanding animated film. Until then, it is always good to get back to watching “Snowtime!” just because of its endless beauty and lesson we all must learn from.

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